Category: Manufacturing

UQM nearly doubles revenue but records $2M loss for quarter

LONGMONT — UQM Technologies Inc. on Thursday reported a loss of $2 million, or 4 cents per share, for the first quarter of its fiscal year 2017 that ended June 30.

UQM (NYSE: UQM) designs and manufactures electric motors, generators, power electronic controllers and fuel-cell compressors for the commercial truck, bus, automotive, marine, military and industrial markets.

The company, with operations in southwest Weld County, nearly doubled its revenue for the quarter compared with the same period a year ago. UQM posted revenue of $1.4 million, compared with $741,000 in the first quarter last year, an increase of 94 percent.

“We are pleased with the results of the first quarter,” Joe Mitchell, UQM Technologies’ president and chief executive, said in a prepared statement. “Revenue increased in our base North American business, with particular sales growth of our heavy-duty electric propulsion systems, … “We are starting to see some stabilization in the North American market as we prepare for the next phase of our business development in the Asia market.”

UQM announced in June that it had struck a deal to sell a controlling stake in the company to a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based Hybrid Kinetic Group Limited for $48 million in cash.

Lightning Hybrids raises $2.3M in new funding

LOVELAND — Lightning Hybrids LLC has raised $2.3 million in new funding as the Loveland-based company continues to try and fuel growth.

The company disclosed the fundraising — a combination of equity and debt — in a recent filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Lightning Hybrids CEO Tim Reeser could not be reached for comment.

The filing indicated that the total offering amount was $4 million, meaning more money could be on the way.

The new cash comes on the heels of a $2 million funding round last year.

Lightning Hybrids, 319 Cleveland Ave., makes hybrid systems for medium- and heavy-duty fleet vehicles. The company employs 44 people, mostly in Loveland.

The company has recently announced large orders from early customers, but spokeswoman Bonnie Trowbridge said she expects that a major announcement regarding a large brand’s fleet could come by mid-September.

Ball Corp. reports $369M in net income for second quarter

BROOMFIELD — Ball Corp. (NYSE: BLL) on Thursday reported net earnings of $369 million, or $2.54 per share, for its second quarter that ended June 30.

The Broomfield-based can manufacturer generated $2.03 billion in revenue for the quarter.

The net earnings included after-tax income of $217 million, or $1.49 per diluted share, associated with the sale of certain assets required by regulators before they approved Ball’s acquisition of London-based metal beverage-can maker Rexam for $6.1 billion in cash and equity at the end of June.

Following the deal, Ball became the largest manufacturer of beverage cans in the world.

By comparison, during the second quarter of last year, Ball Corp. generated $2.2 billion in revenue and net earnings of $160 million, or $1.60 per share.

Ball Corp.’s quarterly results included Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp., a subsidiary based in Boulder, that generated net earnings of $19 million on sales of $193 million for the second quarter, compared with net earnings of $20 million on sales of $230 million in the second quarter of 2015.

“Our strong second-quarter results, the completion of legacy metal packaging growth projects, a robust aerospace backlog and the recent Rexam acquisition provide a very solid foundation for a multiyear, value-compounding growth period for our company and our shareholders,” John A. Hayes, Ball Corp.’s chairman, president and chief executive, said in a prepared statement.

Hayes said one month into the acquisition integration that business-related services and manufacturing operations are running smoothly. “The past 17 months of planning have evolved into action, and the synergy execution process is well underway in all value-capture work streams.”

Heska shares soar on 2Q earnings gains

LOVELAND – Shares of Heska Corp. (Nasdaq: HSKA), which makes veterinary diagnostic and specialty products, were up more than 11 percent in Wednesday afternoon trading after the company posted major year-over-year gains in net income and revenue for the second quarter.

The Loveland-based company reported net income for the period ending June 30 of $2.5 million, or 35 cents per diluted share, more than double the marks of $1.2 million and 17 cents per share for the same period a year earlier.

Revenue for the second quarter, meanwhile, came in at $30 million, up 25 percent over a year ago.

Heska’s Core Companion Animal Health segment saw sales rise 18 percent to $24.5 million on strong performance from blood testing instruments, consumables and digital imaging, company officials said. The company’s Other Vaccines, Pharmaceuticals and Products segment, meanwhile, climbed 74 percent to $5.5 million.

The company finished the second quarter with $6.7 million in cash. Stockholder’s equity increased from $63.5 million as of Dec. 31 to $75.7 million as of June 30.

As the trading day neared its close Wednesday, Heska shares were trading at $48.50 apiece, up $4.89 from Tuesday’s close.

Advanced Energy reports improved earnings for Q2

FORT COLLINS — Advanced Energy Industries Inc. (Nasdaq: AEIS) on Monday reported an increase in revenue and profit for its second quarter that ended June 30 compared with the same quarter a year ago.

The Fort Collins-based maker of power and control products used in semiconductors, flat-panel displays and other electronics, reported sales of $118.8 million for the quarter, up from $108.7 million for the same quarter a year ago and up from $103 during the first quarter of this year.

Profit for the quarter was $27.3 million, or 68 cents per share, compared with $20.2 million, or 50 cents per share during the first quarter, and $23.0 million, or 56 cents per share in the second quarter of 2015.

“The second quarter exceeded our expectations on the top and bottom line with record contributions from our semiconductor and service businesses and a rebound in our Industrial markets,” Yuval Wasserman, Advanced Energy’s president and chief executive, said in a prepared statement. “Our current performance is a direct result of the adoption of our recent design wins in next-generation 3-D enabling technologies to volume production.”

Biodesix raises additional $7M from sale of preferred shares

BOULDER — Biodesix Inc. has raised $7 million on a follow-on sale of its offering of series F preferred shares, bringing the total amount raised for the round to $24.8 million.

The Boulder-based diagnostic test-maker had raised nearly $17.8 million in February through the Series F funding round. A preferred stock is a class of ownership in a corporation that has a higher claim on its assets and earnings than common stock.

The additional capital was provided by existing Biodesix investors and will be used for the development of new diagnostic tests for clinical use with immunotherapies — treatments that use certain parts of a person’s immune system to fight diseases such as cancer. Biodesix’s blood tests identify which cancer patients could best benefit from various cancer drugs, because most cancer drugs work only on specific sets of the population. In essence, the tests help get the right drugs to the right patients.

The money also will be used to expand the company’s offering of its commercialized tests, Veristrat and GeneStrat.


Popsockets hires Bob Africa to head marketing efforts

BOULDER — PopSockets LLC, a Boulder-based designer and manufacturer of mobile-device holders, has hired Bob Africa as chief marketing officer as the company continues to experience rapid growth.

Africa has served for the last five years as president of Kidrobot, a Boulder-based company that creates and sells limited-edition art toys, signature apparel and lifestyle accessories.

Africa has more than 17 years of experience in brand building, product marketing and consumer insight experience. Prior to joining Kidrobot, he held senior leadership positions with Salomon Sports, adidas and Pearl Izumi.

Africa serves as a mentor for entrepreneurs and startups, working with both Techstars and the Boulder-based Boomtown Accelerator. He also volunteers with Achilles International-Colorado, which matches disabled runners and walkers with guides for weekly runs around Boulder.

PopSockets was founded in 2012 by David Barnett. The company’s flagship product, the PopSocket, is a collapsible grip and stand that provides one-hand holding for any mobile device. Its companion product, the PopClip, enables PopSockets users to mount their phones on their dashboards, bathroom mirrors, lockers and other surfaces for hands-free viewing.

Rick Gardner tapped to lead EWI Colorado in Loveland

LOVELAND — Rick Gardner has been appointed director of EWI Colorado, a new applied research center in Loveland.

Gardner, who was the director of product development for Boulder-based MinuteKey, a maker of automated kiosks for key-duplication, will lead EWI’s newest facility dedicated to establishing best-in-class technical capabilities in advanced quality-measurement technologies and help manufacturers gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

Rick Gardner

Rick Gardner

Gardner also will serve as the spokesman for EWI Colorado, with responsibilities including business development, client relations, government and community relations, operations, and contracts.
EWI is operating in 14,000-square-feet at 815 14th St. S.W. in the Rocky Mountain Center for Innovation and Technology, the former Agilent Technologies campus that has been idle for the past five years.

EWI, formerly known as Edison Welding Institute, uses engineering and technology to develop, test and implement advanced manufacturing methods for a variety of industries, including aerospace, automotive, defense, energy, government, heavy manufacturing, medical and electronics.

The nonprofit organization is sustained from contract fees paid by companies tapping into its services. EWI’s presence is expected to attract companies to lease space at the 800,000-square-foot campus that has five buildings.

“EWI is thrilled to have such an experienced industry leader to help position EWI Colorado as a national and global leader,” Chris Conrardy, EWI’s vice president of strategic initiatives and chief technology officer, said in a prepared statement.

“With Rick Gardner’s proven track record of building startups and strong ties to the Rocky Mountain manufacturing region, he is a perfect choice for this vital role,” Conrardy said.

Gardner has more than 20 years of industry experience with startups and existing companies building high-performing teams to meet business objectives. He has managed organizations in the development of electronic manufacturing test systems, software/firmware systems, robotic systems, optical imaging systems, rocket and spacecraft propulsion systems.

In May, EWI named Evgueni Todorov as technology leader for nondestructive evaluation and to be in charge of applied research and development activities in advanced process monitoring and quality-assessment technologies at EWI Colorado. EWI also hired Marcie Erion of Loveland as a business-development specialist. While Erion was a business-development specialist for the city of Loveland, she was instrumental in attracting EWI to Loveland and helped assemble a $6 million incentive package funded by the city of Loveland, the state’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade and federal grants through the Colorado Advanced Manufacturing Association’s FourFront Colorado initiative. Each of the three entities provided $2 million.

EWI Colorado is the third location in EWI’s network of technology innovation centers, which includes EWI in Columbus, Ohio, and Buffalo Manufacturing Works in Western New York.

Woodward sees net-income boost in third fiscal quarter

FORT COLLINS – Woodward Inc. on Wednesday posted net income of $51 million for its third fiscal quarter ending June 30, a boost of $7 million over the same period a year ago.

That was thanks to a $12 million increase in earnings for the Fort Collins-based manufacturer’s aerospace segment, which offset sales and income declines in Woodward’s industrial segment.

Woodward (Nasdaq: WWD) makes components and control-system solutions geared toward energy efficiency for the aerospace and industrial markets.

The company’s third-quarter profit equated to 81 cents per share, up from 66 cents per share a year earlier. Revenue rose 3 percent to $508 million.

Strength in the aerospace segment was attributed mainly to strong defense sales. The segment saw sales increase 7 percent from a year ago to $309 million. But a declining natural-gas truck market in China helped cause industrial sales to slide 4 percent from last year.

Woodward officials reaffirmed guidance for the full 2016 fiscal year, projecting earnings of from $2.75 to $2.95 per share.

Woodward shares closed at $59.42 Wednesday, up 12 cents from the previous day.

Broomfield-based Pilatus breaks ground on new facility, to add 60 jobs by 2020

BROOMFIELD — Pilatus Business Aircraft Ltd. last week broke ground on a new 118,000-square-foot facility at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport that is expected to accommodate the addition of 60 jobs at the Broomfield-based company by 2020.

The new facility, slated for completion in the spring of 2018, will help Pilatus consolidate its operations at the airport, where it leases 14 different hangars and about 75 percent of the terminal building now. But it will also provide added space as the company brings a new aircraft — the PC-24 twin-engine jet — online next year.

Pilatus Business Aircraft is a wholly owned subsidiary of Swiss company Pilatus Aircraft Ltd., which had sales of about $1.1 billion last year. Founded in 1996, the local subsidiary is responsible for sales, marketing and servicing of Pilatus’ PC-12 single-engine turbo-prop planes in North and South America. The local operations are also responsible for finishing interior and exterior work to customer specifications for about 70 percent of the PC-12s that come off the production line in Switzerland.

Pilatus, 11900 Airport Way, employs about 80 people in Broomfield now, and aims to ramp up to 140 once the new facility is at full production, said Tom Aniello, vice president of marketing for the local firm.

Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport lies along the border of Broomfield and Jefferson counties, and is owned and operated by Jefferson County.

Pilatus’ new facility will be on the west side of the airport near Simms Street and Colorado Highway 128 on Jefferson County land. Pilatus will lease the land from the airport, and own the building. The company has not disclosed the cost of the new building.

Tectonic Management Group of Wheat Ridge is managing design and construction services for the new facility.

“Pilatus has enjoyed steady growth in the business aviation market in our 20 years at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport, and we are delighted to have the confidence to expand our operations and employment here in Jefferson County,” Pilatus Business Aircraft president and CEO Thomas Bosshard said in a prepared statement.